DraftKings will not receive Disney funding

Daily fantasy sports operator DraftKings will not be receiving investment from media group Walt Disney Co or its ESPN subsidiary.

However, a report on website Recode says that DraftKings has been given exclusive rights to advertise fantasy sports on sports network ESPN’s properties starting in 2016.

Reports earlier this year suggested that Disney and ESPN were planning on investing $250 million (€223.7 million) in DraftKings, however it has been suggested that the fantasy operator is now in advanced talks to raise a large round of funding from other strategic investors.

The collapsed Disney deal would have demanded that the fantasy operator commit to large advertising spend across sports network ESPN.

Last August, DraftKings raised $41 million in a round led by the Raine Group, and has enticed a total of $75 million in funding since 2012.

The Disney deal would have valued DraftKings – which has this month applied for a UK gambling licence as it contemplates global expansion – at around $900 million.

Last month Jason Robins, chief executive of DraftKings, denied reports that the company is planning to launch an Initial Public Offering (IPO).

“Right now we are looking at a lot of different options, but that (an IPO) is probably the last thing on our mind,” Robins said.

“We’re just trying to build a great business and engage sports fans.”

source : www.igamingbusiness.com

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